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Pictures of Damage from Hurricane Sandy or Just Another Day in North St. Louis?

Categories: News

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Image via The Onion
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, an oddly poignant article in the Onion said it well:

"Gradually comprehending that this sort of thing is now just a fact of life, citizens all across America stared blankly at images of destroyed homes, major cities paralyzed by flooding, and ravaged communities covered in debris, and finally acknowledged that this, apparently, is now a regular part of the human experience."

Images of the devastation wrought by Sandy this week are so stunning because the damage wrought was so sudden and still so thorough. But there was something very familiar to us about those tragic husks of buildings and rubble-strewn streets.

There are many parts of St. Louis that have fallen into ruin since the 1960s and still look startlingly like a fresh disaster has struck.

Check out these images and see if you can tell which are of damage caused by Hurricane Sandy and which ones are of North St. Louis, as it exists every day. Answers are on the next page.

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Photos of Hurricane Sandy come from Instagram. All but one of the photos of St. Louis come from Chris Naffziger's architecture blog St. Louis Patina.



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2 comments
clairelovesthecity
clairelovesthecity

I spy some familiar Paul McKee brick rustled shipwrecks. These buildings were close to home for me, literally and emotionally, when I lived in St. Louis.

 

I have been thinking a lot about this. Not to downplay the brutality of Sandy, but it is hard not to draw parallels between the devastation I hear about and see via media, and the realities of life here on the East Side of Detroit. The power goes out with increasing frequency, there are sometimes huge numbers of senseless fires, people get hurt and go hungry. A major American city operates with broken, wildly unreliable bus service--this is daily life here. The spatial concentration of poverty (and the exploitation that enables, from differential public service provision to the McKee BS) is a brutal disaster for its victims, too.

 

That photo of the bricks fallen on a car? That was the garage of a man who lived in a crumbling house that brick thieves would pick off even when he was home. Wind damage brought an overly-hasty emergency demolition order. When the man rode the bus Downtown to try to talk to the City about the condemnation of the house where he lived, the demolition was begun immediately. Someone had been watching his house waiting for him to leave, and the moment he did, they began tearing his house down. It was the fastest North City demo I've ever seen.

 

Disasters, man, disasters.

junebug
junebug

HAW! HAW! LAIDIE YU A MO RON! JUST TRAHYIN AQUATE  SITTY YEERS A DEEECLINE WITH A NITE ER 2 A RAIN--TABOUT REDUCTIONIST. SHEEYIT

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